Today one of the most common complaints from people revolves around neck and shoulder pain. The origin of the pain is different for different people and depends upon habits, age as well as skeletal structure. Nonetheless, the modern day habit of spending hours in front of a screen is probably the main culprit behind shoulder and neck pain as well as stress and it´s effect on the body at a physiological, emotional and energetic level. For this reason it is essential to to work with the entire neck, shoulder girdle to hand connection to achieve relief and correct pain creating habits.
The neck is the connecting point between the head and the shoulders. Proportionally speaking the human head is quite heavy. It is for that reason if the natural curves of the spine are not present, for example shoulders fall forward creating an exaggerated curve of the thoracic spine, the vertebrae of the neck, which are not as strong or stable as the vertebrae of the thoracic spine, suffer as well as all the tendons, ligaments, fascia and muscles attached.
Furthermore, the connection between neck and jaw can also cause pain. This connection is easy to feel for yourself. Simply close your eyes and observe the neck and jaw. Now, clench your jaw and observe what happens with the neck. Observe what happens through the skull. You will observe that automatically the muscles in the neck and skull, especially along the temples of the forehead, also tense up. This connection can be responsible for different kinds of pain including not just neck pain, butalso headaches and other discomfort in and around the skull area.
It is for this reason when looking for pain relief around the neck and skull area, it is important to work with the entire structure of the shoulder girdle, the neck and jaw and not just where the pain is centralized.
The shoulders have only one point where bone connects to bone. This point is located just below the throat in-between the left and right clavicle bones right below the interclavicular hole. The rest of the shoulder girdle is connected and held together with various tendons, ligaments and muscle fibers. This structure is fantastic for mobility and grants the human body more movement in the shoulders than around the pelvis, but it also means less stability. For this reason it is important to not only work with the flexibility around the shoulder girdle area to correct a posture where the shoulders fall forward, but also with the entire muscle structure of the thoracic spine to help lift the sternum and maintain the scapula back and resting over the ribcage and not up and forwards into the ears.
Good Yoga shoulder & neck workshop 2015
When the scapula are resting over the back of the rib cage and the sternum is lifted up and away from the pubic bone, the natural curve of the thoracic spine is able to fulfill its structural role and help to carry the weight of the skull instead of placing the majority of the work upon the cervical spine. This of course means less neck pain as well as more space for the diaphragm to move which means a deeper and better breath as well as better functioning digestion and balanced activation of the nervous system, especially that of the Vagus Nerve.
The Emotional Connection
When the Vagus Nerve, digestive system and breath are functioning well we are more able to observe and control our stress response.When we are relaxed we are better equipped to employ the pre-frontal cortex and act in a logical, creative and compassionate manner rather than from the amygdala and its corresponding emotion of fear which commonly has its root in conditioned responses formed by past experiences rather than in the reality of the present moment.
The Energetic Connection:
There are six main meridians in Chinese medicine that run through the shoulders, arms, wrists and hands. For this reason, not only on a physiological level, but also on a energetic level, it is important to connect hands with arms and arms with shoulders and all of these with the neck to provide pain relief in the upper part of the body. The six meridians located in the upper part of the body are the Heart, the Small Intestine, the Large Intestine, the Lungs, the Pericardio and San Jiao.
Each meridian has its role but all of them have something to do with pain and discomfort located in and around the torso and neck as well as problems around the skull including issues dealing with the ears, teeth and eyes. Furthermore the meridians located around the torso and neck especially that of the Lung are related with emotions of melancholy, anxiety and other mental health problems. If you would like to learn more about the meridians I would recommend visiting this page as it offers clear and easy descriptions of each meridian and its corresponding location.
The practice of Yoga is an integral practice of connections.
Visualizing the human experience and human body from an integrated perspective instead of one of pieces and parts is what separates the eastern approach to medicine and philosophy from the western approach. In Yoga the body and mind exist together and are impossible to separatehence the name Yoga, or union. For this reason when working with the body one must observe and work with all of the physical, mental and energetic connections. This is the purpose and wisdom of Hatha Yoga as well as other mind-body practices such as Yin Yoga and Yamuna Body Rolling.
Change how you think, move and feel in mind and body from the inside out.
March/April 2019 Yoga Yamuna Series of Workshops
Don´t miss this great oppurtunity to learn from the great teacher and healer, Norma Goodrick of Core Focus. Norma is certified in Pilates, Yoga, Yamuna Body Rolling,Yamuna Body Logic and has more than 20 years of international exerience integrating these disciplines into her work as both private practioner and group teacher.
Working with her daughter, Michelle Goodrick of Good Yoga, both will teach how to take care of oneself, reduce and remove chronic pain or tightness from your feet to the top of the skull in the workshops of Yamuna and Yoga: Integrated Techniques for Wellness. In each workshop series Michelle and Norma will guide students in the work of Yamuna Body Rolling and then take them through various Hatha Yoga poses to stregthen the mind-body connection of what it feels like to be aligned and move without pain and with ease.
Good Yoga + Core Focus Técnicas Integradas 2015
Integrated Techniques for Wellness Program 2019: 23, 30 of march/ 6 of april
23 of March: Feet to Pelvis: Our base of mobility depends on how the feet and pelvis function. The pelvis is the point of support and fulcrum of movement for the entire body. From the there the spine lengthens upwards and the legs extend downward. If there is misalignement or tightness in this area the rest of the body structure will also suffer. Furthermore, misalignment in the feet will translate upwards into misalignment around the ankles, knees and into the pelvis. In this series of workshops Good Yoga and Core Focus will teach how to release tensions around the pelvis, the legs, sitbones and the iliapoas as well as basic foot care and alignment that will translate along the chain of movement thoughout the whole body, aligning misalignment so that you can feel again the joy of movement. 11:00 – 14.30
Tabla de cadera: Yamuna Body Rolling
23 of March: Shoulders, neck and skull: The majority of neck tension and pain begins with its connection to the shoulders and their connection to the thoracic spine. A lack of space and alignment in this area often results in a weak or collapsed sternum and rounded shoulders. Due to this closed structure, those who hold this often experience shallow, quick breathing instead of a full complete breath. A full breath is not only important for levels of vitality and energy, it also works to massage and support the entire thoracic spine in 360 degrees from the inside out. Learn how to release tension of the neck, increase shoulder flexibility while improving overall lung capacity, energy levels and posture via the the guided pressure of Yamuna Body Rolling and the aligned postures of Hatha Yoga 17:00 – 20:00
30 of March: The pelvic floor, abnominals and your breath: Move from your core.
The center of our body affects each part of our health: weakness and tension in this area can cause problems of the spine as well as issues connected with internal organ funcion. Opening and strengthening your core can relieve and correct problems associated with scoliosis, lumbalgia as well as discomfort associated with menstruation and menopause. It is also great for improving digestion, incontinence and fertility. As well as reducing levels of anxiety and stress. Working around the diagphram both releases emotional tension often held in this area as well as increasing lung capacity. Learn how to use the pressure and traction of Yamuna Body Rolling combined with postures and practices of Hatha Yoga to heal and strengthen yourself from the inside out. 11:00 – 14:30
6 of Aprill: Detailed foot and hand work:
There are very few forms of exercise that address the problems in our feet and hands, but this work is essential because our feet and hands are at the end of our neuromuscular, circulatory and energetic systems. The degeneration in the feet and hands can result in more than arthritis and carpel tunnel syndrome. Weakness and tension here can translate in pain and discomfort further up the chain in the legs, hips and spine as well as the joints in the arms up into the neck and shoulders. It is for this reason that Yamuna Zake developed Yamuna´s Foot Fitness and Hand Fitness.
The feet: Our feet are the base of our movement, and problems in our feet can cause problems further up the muscle chain in the ankles, knees, hips right up into the spine. Learning how to align, strengthen and release points of tension in the feet will result in better alignment, balance and movment throughout the entire body.
The hands: Our hands are very similar in design to our feet. Problems in the hands can result in problems and pain further up in the wrists, shoulders and neck. One can see a real life photo of this connection in Norma Goodrick herself, here. These types of problems are very common among people who work a lot with their hands`. It is becoming more and more common in the general population as the communication in our modern and technological world depends on our hands ability to use a keyboard or touch screen. This continous and repetitive use on a daily basis can result in chronic pain.
Movment of the legs and hips begin in the feet, and movment in the neck and shoulders begin in the hands. Feel and enjoy the release of this connection from the feet up through the spine and from the hands into the shoulders and neck in our your own body and learn how to maintain healthy, happy hands and feet for life. 11:00 – 14:00
It doesn´t matter if your are an experienced or inexperienced student of Yoga or Yamuna Body Rolling. You will not want to miss this great chance that happens just once a year-to learn from Norma Goodrick of Core Focus and her daughter Michelle Goodrick of GoodYoga in the fully equiped Center of Yoga y Bienestar Sevilla.